New software designed to help engineers and others make smarter decisions drew crowds at the FOSE-98 computer exhibition in Washington, DC. Ventana Corp., Tucson, AZ at www.info.ventana.com; FAX 520-325-8319 displayed its new GroupSystems Workgroup Edition. It is a suite of tools for simultaneous, anonymous group decisions. Expert Choice, Inc., Pittsburgh, at firstname.lastname@example.org, unveiled Team Expert ChoiceVersion 9.0. It uses a decision-making method known as the analytichierarchy process for tackling complex decisions having multiple, and possibly conflicting, objectives. Among the most innovative and powerful new decision aids is AnswerTree from SPSS Inc., Chicago at www.spss.com/software/spss/AnswerTree/; FAX 312- 329-3690. The program produces decision tree diagrams giving users an instant snapshot of statistically significant groups in their data. AnswerTree evaluates multiple variables and places them in order of importance. Several tree-based algorithms also enable users to get the best model for their data.
Two researchers from Cornell University have won a $100,000 grant from NASA to continue work to develop an energy-harvesting robotic eel the space agency aims to use to explore oceans on one of the moons of Jupiter.
Is the factory smarter than it used to be? From recent buzzwords, you’d think we’ve entered a new dimension in industrial plants, where robots run all physical functions wirelessly and humans do little more than program ever more capable robotics. Some of that is actually true, but it’s been true for a while.
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